mutual trust and friendship among people who spend a lot of time together.
There are so many things to love about drifting, why else would we all sacrifice so much for it. For me, there’s nothing else that can give that rush! Whilst blazing out of a corner last Saturday I yelled across to my passenger “there’s nothing else like this man, I’m not going back to circuit racing”. That’s why, like so many others I was and still am so attracted to this sport! However one of the best bits in this sport, I didn’t discover until I got further into it. Camaraderie. The new friendships made and the standing friendships reinforced. The mutual view that almost everyone there, is there for the same reason. Sharing tools, spare parts, tyres, or a bit of manpower to help get a car back on track – everyone just wants to see everyone else driving! Remembering back to my first drift competition early 2016, SA young gun Adam Maiello gave me a spare water-pump to get my car back out there, even though he was my first battle was against him and he could have not offered and would have won by default – but to the best 99% in the game, that’s not what it’s about. Above all the action, adrenaline and excitement – for myself, this is the best part of it all.
August 26 welcomed the third Matsuri of 2017 hosted by Mallala Motorsport Park. (If you’re unsure on what a Drift Matsuri is, refer to Mallala May Matsuri 2017). A change in safety regulations (by the sanctioning/insurance group) meant the use of Japanese rollcages were no longer suitable for the event. This resulted in a significant drop in entrants from previous events. However, this only meant more track time for those entered. And compared to previous events – every Group A entrant was keen to tandem lap after lap!
The talent on display all day was insane. Whilst there were less entrants, driving quality was still at a high! Ben Collins was a driver that stood out all day. He made the long trip up from Mount Gambier the day before, towing up his PS13 Silvia. Benho’s car rocks a pretty conventional set up, with a sweet sounding TRUST Mid-mount manifold doing its best to prop up a TD05 turbo feeding air into the VCT SR20. Lap after lap Benho was one of the best drivers to watch, with his extremely snappy and aggressive driving. As a more novice driver, I struggled to come anywhere near matching his supreme angle and speed into every corner of the track.
However, unfortunately Benho kept to his usual character and wrote the car off for the third time in about eleven months after taking a big hit to the passenger side of the car.
This didn’t end his day though, with Banana Aero engaged after converting his S – chassis into and L – chassis. He kept his extremely aggressive and entertaining driving until dusk and despite his unfortunate incident, the smile couldn’t be taken off his face.
Another standout driver of the day was one of the Butterscotch Bandits; Rhys Down in his 180sx. One look at his delicious paint scheme and those wondering why on earth they’re called the Butterscotch Bandits will have all their questions answered.
Every lap leading Rhys, he was consistently up on doors coming out of Mallala’s three-link ‘esses’. Alongside style-king Scott Miller, Rhys made for some of the best driving for both spectators and entrants looking to get some door on door laps. The two of them even pulling off this radical moment captured on camera by Slideways Photography reminding us all of Japan’s Nikko Circuit.
The aforementioned Scott Miller brought out his PS13 Silvia. A lot of people talk about what’s needed for a well setup drift car. Those that talk about a car needing to have a V8/Wisefab/600+ HP would all be silenced by just watching a single lap of Miller’s basic set up s13. With just a T28 hanging off the side of the SR20, the only laps where his car wasn’t against someone’s door, were the laps where the chase car couldn’t keep up.
Fabio Monteiro and David Madon consistently drove in four car trains all day. With gnarly scandos into turn one and close battles all day lead to more entertaining driving.
Fabio was out in his faithful R32 Skyline – a car that he’s been piloting for many years. It’s a cool feeling driving with someone you first saw at a drift event in 2010 before you were old enough to drive and then finding yourself looking over your shoulder coming out of a corner to see them up against your door seven years later on.
David brought out his incredible JZX100 Chaser. He drove consistently on people’s doors, not afraid to get his immaculate car up close and personal throughout the whole track. Lap after lap he could be seen baking tyres in four car drift trains!
Style lord Izaak Oates had both his PS13 Silvia as well as his 180sx through the day. Izaak’s another driver with only a simple motor set up however brings some of the most entertaining driving, optimising aggressive flicks and transitions all throughout the track.
He was also kind enough to lend me a pair of steer wheels for the last session after I’d delaminated my steer tyres and had nothing left over.
Massive thanks go out to Mallala Motorsport Park for putting on a wicked and successful day for us all to enjoy especially all officials that make the day possible.
Please support and appreciate each photographers’ hard work!